EPA mandates ultra-low-sulfur diesel fuel

June 5, 2006

The Environmental Agency has quietly issued a rule requiring U.S. oil refineries to produce ultra-low-sulfur diesel fuel to substantially reduce emissions.

The fuel will contain 97 percent less sulfur than ordinary diesel fuel, The Christian Science Monitor reported. The rule, issued last week, requires at least 80 percent of the diesel fuel produced for highway use be ULSD-compliant.

Under the second part of the rule, all filling stations will be required to sell ULSD instead of, or in addition to, regular diesel fuel.

The move is designed to cut car-produced pollution by about 10 percent, The Monitor said. Although diesel-fueled automobiles account for only about 3 percent of cars sold, up to 90 percent less emissions are anticipated with EPA-mandated "clean diesel" engines that will debut within the next two years.

Richard Kassel, director of the Clean Fuels and Vehicles Project for the Natural Resources Defense Council told the Monitor the new EPA ruled "is the biggest step toward cutting vehicle pollution since lead was taken out of gasoline two decades ago."

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

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